FCB Chicago Wins AOR Duties for Retailer Academy Sports + Outdoors

By Erik Oster 

Houston-based retail chain Academy Sports + Outdoors has selected FCB Chicago as its agency of record following a review launched this summer. The IPG shop is Academy’s first AOR, though the company has worked with other agencies on a project basis in the past.

The brand spent approximately $45.5 million in measured media in 2015 and $14.8 million in the first half of this year, according to Kantar Media.

“For us going forward as we think about our expansion from a really strong brand in a limited geography to undertake national expansion, we frankly needed greater strategic and creative firepower and a broader relationship with a partner that understood sports and outdoors on a national level to complement knowledge within our footprint,” said Academy Sports + Outdoors EVP/CMO Tom Lamb. “We were really happy with FCB’s credentials on all fronts.”


Lamb added that he was particularly impressed by the in-store design portion of the pitch. “Tying it back to in-store with an enhanced customer experience gave them a leg up,” he said.

Academy Sports + Outdoors and FCB Chicago are still in the early stages of the planning process, but a new campaign is expected some time in the spring of 2017. The agency will then continue to focus on assisting the brand as it expands nationally beyond its regional home in Texas. Academy Sports + Outdoors, which has stores as far afield as Louisiana, Kentucky, currently operates 225 locations across the United States and plans to open twenty new ones this year.

The news follows a series of executive changes at FCB Chicago in recent months, including Liz Taylor succeeding Todd Tilford as CCO in August and the subsequent arrivals of executive creative directors Jon Flannery and Kevin Grady the next month.